MONTGOMERY, Ala. – The Independence Day travel season was deadly in the state of Alabama.

The extended travel period, which spanned from 6 p.m. on June 30, through midnight on July 4, left eight people dead on Alabama roadways.

According to the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency (ALEA), a majority of those killed neglected to use a seat belt.

ALEA said seat belts were available, but not in use, in seven of the eight deadly traffic crashes Alabama State Troopers are investigating from this year’s holiday weekend.

The eight fatal traffic crashes consisted of a pedestrian killed in Madison County, a 12-year-old passenger killed in St. Clair County, and six drivers killed in Baldwin, Cherokee, Escambia, Marshall, St. Clair and Talladega counties.

These recent deaths bring 2017’s Trooper-investigated traffic fatalities total to 328 as of July 4, which is eight more than during the same time period in 2016. In 2017, 272 of those killed were in vehicles equipped with seat belts, but only 95 were using a seat belt at the time of the crashes. In fact, more than two-thirds of those killed so far in 2017 were not using seat belts. Among the 328 fatalities, seven were children ages 5 and younger, and at least two of the children were not restrained.

Troopers assigned to the Marine Patrol Division are also investigating one drowning on Lewis Smith Lake, in Winston County.

Nothing further is available as Troopers continue the investigations. Statewide totals will be available later, as local law enforcement agencies submit their traffic crash statistics.

Jeremy Law for SylacaugaNews.com | © 2017, SylacaugaNews.com/Marble City Media LLC. All Rights Reserved.